I feel like I have a bit of whiplash from it, but the first quarter has come and gone! Whew!
Earlier this week, I was driving to work and Spotify shuffled to a song that I did not recall adding to my God's Morning playlist entitled "Dream Small" by Josh Wilson. I'm still unsure how that particular song ended up on my playlist but it was just what my heart needed after completing this first quarter.
The general premise of the song is a celebration of allowing God to use you where you are rather than chasing down huge, lofty dreams. He reminds the listener that God takes down giants with small rocks and we can change the world right where we are. What a reassuring message as the year begins to get crazy.
First quarter was really such a steep learning curve! As much as I've learned over the last year and half at Park University, as well as working at Camp Re-New-All and other opportunities to work with kiddos, there was so much to learn. My most important takeaway is the importance of the feedback you are constantly providing students.
Body language, tone, actual words... it all matters. Students are constantly collecting feedback about how you feel in regards to them. I wish I could say that this is something I am beginning to succeed at but truthfully, I have such a long way to go! All anyone wants is to feel cared about, especially the young ones in our care. As the year goes on, I hope to continually improve the nonverbal feedback I provide students.
Here's to second quarter and all the learning that will happen for my scholars and myself!
As I've dug more into Catholic social media, the idea of liturgical living has cropped up frequently and I've found it so interesting! When I was small, I loved reading about other Catholic cultures that celebrated children's patron saints feast days or remembering a particular Church season. Liturgical living is such a simple and beautiful way to incorporate our faith more into our life.
A great example of liturgical teaching is paying attention to feast days and calling attention to the saint of the day. We do this in the secular culture for St. Patrick's Day or (St.) Valentine's Day. October is dedicated to Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and to celebrate her month a little more fully, I am using bell work time to help students learn more about Mary and her impact on Catholic faith and culture.
So far, the students have made grammar corrections on informative paragraphs about Our Lady of Kibeho and Our Lady of Lourdes. They've brainstormed what they know about her and shared their favorite facts or stories about them. We've also copied down verses from Luke's Gospel and identified the moment of Mary's Fiat. It's been such a great way to expose them to more about our Blessed Mother without overwhelming them with one big information overload (because there is so much about her!).
As the school year goes on, I plan on celebrating the Advent season with the Jesse Tree and experiencing Lent as a class as well. Liturgical living is a fairly new concept to me but I think it has great potential for how we shape our daily lesson plans around particular Church seasons.
What do you think? Is there something in particular you think belongs in the classroom if we're teaching liturgically? Let me know in the comments!
First year Catholic educator in the Classical curriculum style. I teach middle school English-Language Arts.